A Ruthless Government is Better Than a Youth-less Government

cropped-benbruce2b.jpgWhen you take a critical look at the composition of the present administration at the federal level, the only place you can find youths is in the National Assembly.

There are no youths in the cabinet of President Muhammadu Buhari otherwise known as the Executive Council of the Federation. All the ministers are either middle age or senior citizens.

The same is true for the judiciary. The only place you will find a few youth is in the National Assembly and especially the House of Representatives.

Now, I want you to ask yourself why we have this reality despite the fact that over 60% of our population are young people of 36 and under.

I have often pondered this challenge and the reason always eluded me until I became active on social media sometime last year.

You see, Martin Luther King Jr. once said ‘When evil men plot, good men must plan. When evil men burn and bomb, good men must build and bind. When evil men shout ugly words of hatred, good men must commit themselves to the glories of love.’

The old breed politicians who put Nigeria where she is have been plotting and continue to plot, but rather than counter them by organizing yourselves and by planning to mobilize into parties and get elected, what most of our youths do is to tear each other down on social media for the very same old breed politicians who the youth complain about.

I call it the crab mentality. As you may or may not be aware, if you catch crabs, you do not need to cover the basket or vessel where you put them in because once one of them starts to climb out, the others will drag it back down and so they act as a police against each other for the benefit of their oppressors.

Another challenge our youths have is their outward focus. This was thoroughly put on display during the last US elections. Nigerian youths who fought each other over whether it was appropriate or not for our own presidential candidates to refuse to debate had strong opinions on the US presidential debates.

Our youths took opposing sides and fought each other using the vilest of words to describe those on the other side as if Hillary and Trump were vying to preside over Aso Rock.

We show this same zeal for European Premier Leagues and it is not unusual to read about Nigerian youths fighting or in extreme situations, even killing each other, because of rivalry over their European football clubs.

If our youth were to channel this same zeal to building unity amongst themselves so they can. have a common front in 2019, there will definitely be a change in the political structure of Nigeria.

Let me give you a recent example. A couple weeks ago, the Nigerian Communications Commission had instructed GSM firms to increase their tariffs. As to be expected, this move sparked outrage amongst Nigeria’s youth who rose up spontaneously against it and when the NCC saw their reaction they backed down.

Why do you think they backed down? Was it because you were angry? Was it because you guys are numerous in number? None of the above.

They backed down for one and only one reason. Nigeria’s youth were UNITED in their rejection of the data tariff increase.

You see, nobody is afraid of your numbers or your anger or your political affiliation. What they are afraid of is your unity because when you unite, nothing is impossible to you.

So settle it in your minds that you are all Nigerians. Do not look at each other as ‘aboki’ or ‘IPOB’ or other such derisive names you use to label each other on social media.

If you do not do this, then 2019 will come and you will continue being bag carriers and PAs for the old breed.

Let me ask you a question: How many of you youths believe that a youth can be President in 2019? Be honest.

Now let me ask you another question. How many of you believed that Donald Trump would win the US elections?

You see, as Nelson Mandela said, ‘it always seems impossible until it is done’!

Let me tell you from my experience, if you do your part, divine forces will do the rest.

No matter how bad a ruthless government is, it is always going to far better than a youth-less government. No matter how young at heart a senior citizen is, he cannot know the needs of the youth as much as a youth.

In fact we can say that if it is not a youth, it cannot be a youth!

Youths do not even have to go and form your own party. Democracy is a game of numbers. You have the numbers. We don’t.

My recommendation to you is to join the already established parties and use your numbers to take it over.

And do not worry too much about money. Money is important, yes, but the world is changing. In fact it has changed!

Hillary Clinton had more money than Donald Trump during the elections. At one point she was outspending Donald Trump 7 to 1 on advertising.

But she underestimated the power of social media and Trump used it to win the hearts and minds of many Americans and won the election.

It is not only Hillary Clinton that underestimated social media. Nigeria’s old breed politicians also underestimate it and surprise, surprise, so do you youths!

Because when you use social media to fight each other you show that you do not know it’s power. Learn from Trump. No matter what the mainstream media says or said about him, he did not believe their news. He did not accept their reality. Instead he used social media to create his own version of reality that eventually became the version that manifested in real life!

And this idea that youths make lousy leaders is unscientific and goes against the evidence. Nigeria made her greatest strides and achieved some of her most rapid progress between Independence and 1979 and youths led for thirteen of those nineteen golden years.

Nigeria has only gone into recession twice in her history and at both times we were not led by youths. Essentially what I am trying to say is that the man with an opinion cannot quarrel with the man with the facts and the facts favour our youth.

Murray-Bruce is the Senator representing Bayelsa East and founder of the Silverbird Entertainment Group

Categories: Articles

25 replies

  1. Very true sir. I have always thought of the same. We Nigerian youths are nonchalant about the affairs of government and are laidback. We accept what ever goes on up there without questions. Or just relax and accept our fate. When we become aware followed by interest then we will start asking the right questions and demand the right change. We need to be interested in government the way we are interested in social media.


    • Sir, You Are Highly Celebrated Senator B.M.B….Myself And Millions of Other Nigerians Would Be Happier And Blessed To Have You As President, Federal Republic Of Nigeria…Come 2019!!!


      • President?? Just like that?? That’s one 9f our problems o. For real And seriously been president ain’t even the issue for now. So. Many things can still be achieved with his current position amd he has been doing some tremendous things which i find very ok 👌 but not that he should become president in 2019 😁. It ain’t that easy or funny… 👌


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  2. Well spoken. The old breed had been using the “Devide and Rule” tactics on the Nigerian people. But we are getting wiser. The present regime encourages ethnicity and that is what is causing disunity among the youths


  3. Beautiful.
    But distinguished senator, what is it that makes you Nigerian and me Nigerian?


  4. Last year when the ruling party campaign advocates came to me, preaching about becoming a member of the changing party and all its nonsense, i simply told him that instead of giving me a plate of rice and an exercise book with a Gotv decoder, can your party give me constant electricity? I dont need these gifts because they only solve my present need in the short term i want to know how to catch my fish.

    This old fellows are not driving the economy using real time data technology, forget about the experience and all those crap, todays world revolves around technology take it or leave it and the older generation/citizens are kids to it. My age mate in the US, UK, China are millionares if not billonaries, PDP has failed so also APC because it is run by people who dont rule by the statistics/data, sometimes i wish i was not a Nigerian.

    Social media is a tool which we should use to build a new Nigeria around the youth because it is our future and that of our kids that is been disrupted, not raining curses and abuses on each other.

    Nice post @benmurraybruce



  5. Sir, I sincerely commend u for your genuity and sincerity in airing out basic truth that can work out in the system of Nigerian Govt. Whether they like it or not. Youths must be integrated into system of Govt. But sir pls if there is any where u can assist me in my small business, I will appreciate. I am a young unemployed graduate from Akwa Ibom for good 6 yes. Pls help me


  6. Ageism is discrimination and I know that the honourable senator would not vacate his seat for a young person just because the person is young. The unity of ignorant people only bring about foolish actions. Our youth need to improve themselves and seek knowledge before given responsibility. Youthful fervor is not enough.


  7. I appreciate your passion but I beg to differ with some analogies.
    Trump didn’t win in the game of numbers (losing 2.8 million votes).
    Trump also didn’t win the social media war (a demographic analysis of his votes showed he won in less urban/metropolitan areas and among less tech savvy / aging people who in any case are the same people in Nigeria you want to be displaced)
    Trump will also be the oldest President elect in US history (a far cry from the youthful revolution you are asking for).

    Do I wish that the Nigerian youths will rise up to leadership and governance? Yes
    But can they have a hostile take over the mainstream parties in Nigeria? Difficult to say. Maybe 50-50. And I hope they try.

    My take is that the country is being made inhabitable for the best of our youth.
    These bright and excellent chaps are forced to leave the country so that those with mediocre abilities can ‘run the show’ without hinderance. It has become unfashionable to have military coups. So taking over the military no longer guarantees control of Nigeria.
    Dominance is now defined by competence in the fields of technology, finance and administration. Your guess is as good as mine which geographic zones in Nigeria have the bulk of those excelling in those areas and their age distribution.

    There is such a vacuum of next generation leadership amongst those who want to keep Nigeria in their pockets. These people were not able to get their children to be fit to replace them in the age of rapid technological advancement and a globalized society. The only departure from the ‘business of selection’ as usual was GEJ. Probably the only true post Independence President but he was fought so that the old guards (civil war Nigeria leaders) could take over and postpone the inevitable.

    If things go on as planned, the country will be sufficiently devoid of structures that encourage excellence so that the ‘heirs’ can preside over a mediocre populace.


  8. Thank you very much sir. I’ve copied you in many ways and I’d like to prove it to you


  9. Nice one Senator! When our youths ceases to make judgement based on where ‘he/she’ comes from, then they shall have a voice again. For now, money made in mediocrity has made most youth mad!


  10. sir, how can i get in touch with you personally?, cos i have a proposal for you


  11. how can i get in touch with you personally sir?, cos i have a proposal for you sir


  12. Thank you for this post, though the caption put me on edge before I read the story.

    But permit me to ask if there is a common front where youths are given the opportunity to express themselves for the common good.

    One of my challenge in Nigeria is crying and shouting when no one is listening. But if there is a place where our voices can be heard then we have a lot to say.

    Thanks too for exposing the issues that the youths are ignorant of… “The Crab Mentality” and “The Outward Focus”

    Chinaka G.C


  13. Thank you for this post, though the caption put me on edge before I read the story.

    But permit me to ask if there is a common front where youths are given the opportunity to express themselves for the common good.

    One of my challenge in Nigeria is crying and shouting when no one is listening. But if there is a place where our voices can be heard then we have a lot to say.

    Thanks too for exposing the issues that the youths are ignorant of… “The Crab Mentality” and “The Outward Focus”

    However, I believed so strongly that youths have the key to the future.


  14. Got me thinking real hard.


  15. Nice one but what are you too doing to at least encourage we youths that has always been willing to unite the rest who are still gullible
    I have a movement which capital is the only issue delaying me from sensitizing the youths its called







  17. Dear Senator Ben Murray Bruce,
    I hope this e-mail meets you well, and riding high and strong on the wheels of Common Sense. You should know that I had wanted to reach you long before now on an article you authored sometime last year, in the Thisday newspaper of Monday Nov. 7th 2016, titled; It’s Time to Add Value to Nigeria’s Youths, but couldn’t, for strained personal reasons. Do forgive my delay on this, as I think the e-mail is long overdue.
    However, you had said the following in your article:

    “I was inspired to write you this piece after reading the inspirational story of Dr. Oluyinka Olutoye, the Nigerian born Texas surgeon who with his partner performed the historical and ground breaking miraculous surgery on a fetus that involves removing it from her mother’s womb and replacing her there after the successful surgery. You see, when the world needed somebody to perform this impossible surgery, they looked for a Nigerian.”

    “Just as Murtala Muhammad predicted in 1976, Nigerian youths have come of age. They have found their purpose and that is an important thing because no matter how many university degrees you have, if you don’t know your life’s purpose, you are worse than an illiterate because an illiterate can start a business and many have done so.”

    “If you are honest, you will agree that our glory years were between 1963 and 1979. That is a period of 16years. Well, it may interest you to know that for the 13 of those 16 years, we were led by youths…”

    Now, having digested the entire article over and over again, as I must say I commend you on your stand in the application of Common Sense in repositioning Nigeria. I felt compelled to send you the cover page and content pages of my book; The Conspiracy Against Nigeria Youths, which I published online earlier last year, with the hope that it makes some sense to you. Not to mention the fact, on your points, that I thought Common Sense should know that: “A cultural legacy of purposelessness and misdirection had been passed on from the past generations to the present Nigeria youths, and those yet unborn.” As such, Murtala Muhammad was wrong to have assumed Nigeria youths at the time had discovered their purpose, and even as wrong as all of his so-called predecessor youths that governed the Nation- how clueless they all were, to have governed at a time when we had but a few or no Nuclear scientist, physicist, Mathematician, Economist, Chartered Accountant or professional politician in a hall room the size of the biggest hall at the Transcorp Hilton or Eko Hotels.

    Senator, Ben Murray Bruce, I rest my case here, as I do hope Common Sense will indeed redirect the Nigeria Ship to the frontiers of the greatest nations.

    Sincerely Yours
    Jonathan Onche Edeh


  18. Wonderful article.
    Sir now I ask, where should we start from? ,Since we don’t have a neutral viable youth body that can stand against this old brains without compromise , please I need a clue .


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